Tomorrow morning we celebrate All Saint's Sunday as we return to having church inside the church building and we will start the service at 9am. It is a Holy Day where we remember ALL the Saint's, those of us who are alive, and those who have crossed the divide of the living to the dead. We will pay special tribute to our church family that have crossed that divide this year, but also have a time to remember everyone of the Saints we see no more in our midst and to acknowledge our continued sorrow and loss but also hope of the future. It is a powerful service where we light a candle and white roses are available to the loved ones in our church family who are grieving the loss of one of our Saints. We reserve the roses for those friends and family with names listed in the bulletin but all will be remembered.
A reminder to gain an hour of sleep before you go to bed by adjusting your clocks. The bulletin is attached for those of you who will not be joining in person and will not be able to get a paper bulletin. Starting this week we have more ways to be able to worship with us and they are listed below:
1. Sanctuary option - Entering the front door of the church you keep walking until you reach the sign in tables that are in the parlor area, if you are going to worship in the sanctuary. The door that has in the past been left open that is to the left when you walk in the church will be closed. This is so there is only one line coming in and out of the church sanctuary and we don't have people getting too close and merging together. The greeters will be making sure you sign in, that you have a mask, and you are wearing your mask correctly. Masks must be over the mouth and nose and stay over the mouth and nose for the duration of your time in the building. A wooden collection box will be available in the parlor for you to place your offerings into before or after the service. There is no guarantee of being exactly 6 feet apart in this worship area. In addition, while I will be over 20 feet away from everyone on the altar I will not be wearing a mask while speaking. If this makes you uncomfortable or you are high risk I suggest trying one of the other choices that will be listed here. Some churches have chosen not to allow singing at all because of the risk posed when people sing with great gusto. We ask that if you are going to sing with the music it is done with no more effort than what you would do if you were having a polite conversation. If you really want to get into the music you may clap, you may stomp your feet, you may wave your hand in the air, but please do not belt out the music at this time for everyones safety.
2. Fellowship Hall option- Entering the downstairs double doors you will walk down the hallway until you reach the sign in table. The greeters will be making sure you sign in, that you have a mask, and you are wearing your mask correctly. Masks must be over the mouth and nose and stay over the mouth and nose for the duration of your time in the building. You may then choose a place to seat where all members of the group you came with sit 6ft away from everyone else. There are chairs pre-set up and the entire Fellowship Hall is available to put up a chair(S) as long as they are at least 6 ft away from any other group of chairs. We will be having the service livestream from the television and there is an altar there to help you enter into a sense of worship. A wooden collection box will be available for you to place your offerings into before or after the service. The same singing restrictions from the sanctuary apply to this space.
5. Listen on your phone - You can can also use a phone to listen to our service by calling 857-799-9465 from any phone starting at 8:45 am. This will only have sound coming through and you will not be able to see anything that is occurring. This is also the one where there might be sound issues because it does not always pick up the sound as well as we would like in the sanctuary. To give your financial offering mail your offering to: Tom's Creek United Methodist Church 10926 Simmons Road Emmitsburg, MD 21727
6. Watch a shortened version of the service later - You can go to our website here https://www.tomscreekumc.com/service-videosand by Monday morning there should be shortened version of our service that will contain the Scripture, the Middle Hymn, the Sermon, and this week it will have the most powerful part of our All Saints remembrance. You can always click the Donate button on our website to safely give financially to the church.
7. CD- We will burn the service on a CD for you to listen to if you have a CD player. This will take a little bit to make happen and Pastor Heath will try to drop it off to you the week following the service. The only way to make this happen is to contact Pastor Heath or the church office to let us know you would like one.
As you can see there are lots of options for being part of worship at Tom's Creek. We want everyone to be able to journey with us in some way during this continued pandemic. We know that none of these options are perfect and they all fall short of being able to stand shoulder to shoulder and hand to hand in the sanctuary together. We pray for that day to happen but until then let us continue to journey with one another even as we worship in many different formats together as one church family.